human on Mon, 5 Aug 2002 19:16:08 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> no more superpowers

  [post sent to design-l, forwarded as a submission for nettime-l.]

>re: .US superpower status, military, "culture", "civilization"

  agreed. have been holding my (writing) tongue for quite a while,
  as there is a fine line (somewhere) in the (electronic) sand (of
  the internet) of, where- sedition? the rhetoric has overtaken the
  reality of the situation along time ago. (in this instance, more
  recently, but supersaturated and 'new and improved'). to write
  about it, will need to be careful and balanced. and yet, it is
  complex, and the superpowerlessness of the .US populace to either
  redirect the ship of state or to have any representation (beyond
  status quo polling of majority/closed opinions) could bring the
  house of cards down quicker than an oilman looking for black gold.

  it is the longest long-bet with the greatest risk and thinnest of
  margins for error, and in all probability an impossible task to
  pull off, and not even a good bet or worthwhile nor intelligent
  in any way for anything outside of a very narrow and pre-determined
  worldview of how things work (and they Do Not Work Well At All,
  eg: economic corruption, political systems, social breakdowns).

  when something is so inevitable as war, and yet anything and many
  many many things could be done to prepare for or prevent oversights
  by, say, energy efficiency measures or anything to save lifes or
  to shape the situation to whatever best outcome _could be possible-
  and yet- it is not even on the table- it is an all-or-nothing pro-
  position, for or against... then it is (to me) beyond the realm of
  the absurd and into the spooky realm of the unreal dimensions which
  breed insanity en masse. meaning, having existed in this complacent
  society, insular, and to see the 'true belief' taken this far to
  the edge, and to see how people 'want to believe' that the stock
  market will be quickly remedied and it will be over in a week or
  two, just waiting for that irrational exhuberance bug to hit again
  so everyone can get back to normal levels of greed and excessiveness-
  and that this is not going to happen, hopefully not in the same way
  nor for the same purposes, as the crises of late are the only thing
  that politicians of all stripes took as a warning sign for massive
  changes needed, that this marketplace democratic voting of share-
  holders holding nothing but worthless paper makes that dry well
  bet of the addict of parlor games all the more enticing, that is,
  the Big Bet, the one going down, there's oil in that there place...

  what seems apparent, and what seems to explain something that has
  been mostly inexplainable- for example, how could the Nazi party
  rise in Germany without anything to stop it in its tracks long
  before the horrors of World War II, is that it is superpowerless-
  ness of people, it seems to be, that silence brought about by an
  inability to either influence or practively change a direction of
  anything that is considered 'a success'. the .US has to play it-
  self out, it seems. citizens are mostly clueless, including al-
  most all pundits who state that a War in addition to the un-official
  one now going on globally can be added to, without other things also
  coming into play, to muck up the game of the lone superpower hero.
  that is tragedy though, tragic flaws. who can say or do a thing to
  stop it? reported in the news that it is inevitable. that it may
  also bring down the United States, government, the people, void
  the constitution, create global chaos, beg retaliation and power-
  grabbing by others in similar self-interested greed and deviousness,
  and be held accountable for making a mess of the fragile framework
  that is the globe we have to share- well, even if a punch is pulled
  at this point, things are already way too far into motion to stop
  all of the cables and strings from snapping and breaking, and to
  give that gambler of US free reign with trading the cards for such
  short-sighted and egomaniacal hands is itself the kiss of death.

  bust. bane. that sense that it is the right of the .US citizen to
  trample the world to feed its own SuperEGO Incorporated as the
  corrupt state of unworldly and most ungodly of affairs, goldly so,
  brings with it a wrath from the demons of bad betters bureaucracies
  that shell games don't work when the dinosaurs have all died away.
  the giant landed on the island with all the small people, it is
  tired, sleeply, day-dreamy, lying down to take a nap while all of
  the non-giants are tying up this beast, one rope at a time, using
  the threads bare from the coat that once housed imagined emperors.

  the sadness, as a citizen, to see what is best be sacrified for that
  which is the worst export this place could bring about, and that is
  reckless carelessness about the others, the origins, that compose
  the interrelated world- to show blatant and careless disregard for
  all that is going on, and to provoke only those scenarios in its own
  special interests, of the most corrupt of times, to expand deceits,
  as if it were everyone's right, no, liberty, in the .US to pollute
  the worldstage with death, bondage, and the pursuit of pure greed.

  the double talking mirrors, hear them in the words spoken, double-
  entendre-speak, for every terrorist act against innocent people is
  another news story headlined with the same words about .US actions.
  about every dictator running amok, with reports of the constitution
  being put through the Enron shredder in the V.P.'s secret hideaway.
  it is a bad scary sense, when a leaked document, often the ruse to
  get news out from an Admin, becomes the reason for investigating
  the senate when there is a chance- only a chance, that it came from
  within the administration itself. that is .US design, coup de grace.

  and it is this massively bent and warped rhetoric which is masking
  the soundbite as substantial discourse, which leaves critiques and
  dissenters as 'noise' in the harmony of the true dream of cities on
  the hill (no mention of the ghettos below, below heavenly smog). a
  change from all, in all states, in all lives, to shift to counter-
  weight this capsized supertanker about to upend with no hand-holds
  in sight, is the will of many to make one decisive move together;
  and as much as theory acts as a guillotine to chop off the heads
  and working minds of many a good thinker, it is a simple proposal
  that, instead of try to reverse course, going 180 degrees in the
  other direction, it is if everyone shifted 1/3 towards the opposite
  direction, into a better future, a massive incrementalism that at
  once could bring a seachange of momentum to shift the weight in
  the biblically flooded (presidential) fishing boat (ain't no .US ark)
  but something worthy enough for that last past through Styx muzak...

  meaning: the ship of (the world) state may break up, if it were to
  do an about face. the dynamics, the forces involved, do not make
  it a probable or possible outcome. yet, if many were to turn in
  ever-so-slight a direction, together, that is, to speak their mind
  and their conscience, without breaking up the state nor to bring
  down the state (nor want to, def. sedition) it may be 'within the
  realm of reason' and in the best interests to both be against the
  actions, and yet for better actioning, movements, shifts in the
  weights and measures of human conscience and consciousness, so that
  whatever is happening now, if anyone really knows, that it may still
  be possible to slowly, minutely, discretely, one by one by many, to
  make that small voice, that small act, into a larger, and peaceful
  yet forceful determination and declaration of a future brighter than
  that of any nuclear holocaust seen as the 2nd coming of despots dreams.

  it is most difficult as the sheer mass of things moving forward are
  symbolized by people at the helm. but as much if not more is also
  a type of programming, inherent in bureaucracies. some good and bad
  at the same time, even. yet, when it comes to dealing with such issues
  it is people who inhabit these stations. and when the battle cry is
  heard for, basically, a very unwise series of decisions and continuing
  indebtness to this type of boondoggle development of the unreal estate-
  it begs the constitutional citizenry to rise up to the moment and to
  use that most undervalued of traits, human ingenuity- to create or
  reveal or shape a better or best alternative to the multifactors now
  churning about in the bubbling cauldron that is the sea of World War 3.

  to personify, sad as it is to do, it is like the .US is a very rich
  child who has a checkbook and who has done everything by purchasing
  or spending money, and who has always got what they wanted, and-or
  gotten pulled out of situations that didn't go there way. so they
  have never 'lost'. they do not know they can lose- they cannot as
  they are protected, have been, from ever losing in any substational
  way as to make one have to reboot their awareness beyond the myopic
  self and its interest. this true belief, this true faith in one's
  self, is not the .US. it is one individual acting as the whole of
  the .US, and it is the achille's heel when this person is out of
  touch with the larger reality to such a degree that they cannot
  gauge, nor could they fundamentally ever believe, based on their
  own emperical experience, that this could blowback supremely UGLY.
  that is, this could be the making of the most despised and the most
  despicable pagentry and abuse of power the .US has ever seen on the
  largest of scales, and people who are associated with it will, if
  assuming absolute power, be held absolutely responsible as symbols,
  even if it is divorced from the larger truths of broken systems. it
  may be the price of power- not powerlessness, even- but destruction.
  the destruction of the .US, or the destruction of those misgoverning
  this state of affairs into the worst of all possible speedy outcomes.

  there could be many proofs given about various scenarios. and yet all
  have the same problem. the people driving, if they even are, are now
  driving this thing fathoms deeper, as the steel hull wails and wains.
  find that rivet to hang onto, find that portal, find that wheel, please
  someone, everyone, find the wheel, if only in a dream, and start steering
  this situation the other direction, steer away, away, its rising out
  of the water, what? not the leviathon. the unity of the human state
  will be found in the interdependence of individual actions in relation
  to those of the larger group, and this, across scales, cannot work by
  independence alone, nor, fundamentally, global warfare without reaction.
  turning, towards, turning, sinking, waves crashing, silence, freeze frame.

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